Speaking at the awards ceremony held at the Laico Atlantic Hotel in Banjul, the managing director of the bank, Mr Pa MM Njie reiterated his institution’s unwavering commitment to the promotion of quality education as a prerequisite for national development, emphasising that the award is meant to recognise and motivate the students for their incredibly amazing performance.
He said: “The ten awardees of our excellence in the millennium awards will each receive a certificate of excellence, prize sum of 5, 000 GMD in the form of a Trust Bank student savings account and a brand new tablet. In addition to these, our bank has decided to award a certificate of excellence and a sum of 20, 000 GMD to the school that has produced the highest number of awardees. We felt that going a step further to give a special recognition to the student with the best overall result is long overdue and so for the first time, this year, the top student will be awarded an additional cash prize of 5,000 GMD and 10,000 GMD will go to the school he or she attended.
Consequently, Gambia Methodist Academy received a sum of 10, 000 GMD for producing the best student this year and an additional 20, 000 GMD for being the school with the highest awardees in the 12 years of the award.
Kaddijatou Gassama, of Gambia Methodist Academy, who stood out as first among equals, was given a special certificate with an additional cash prize of 5000 GMD.
The other distinguished awardees are: Fatoumatta Ceesay, Gambia Methodist Academy; Alieu Kasseh, Gambia Methodist Academy; Alieu Bah, Latrikunda Upper Basic School; Alieu Ceesay, Gambia Methodist Academy; Awa S Jobe, Siffoe Upper Basic School; Fatoumatta Saidy Bah, Latrikunda Upper Basic School; Modou Mboob, Abuko Upper Basic School; Rohey John, New Covenant Upper Basic School; and Begeh Jeng, Gambia Methodist Academy.
Mr Njie added: “Trust Bank’s contribution to the education sector was very recently boosted with a donation of D200, 000.00 to both St. Augustine Senior Secondary School and Armitage Senior Secondary School to help in the procurement of much needed aids for the teaching of science in the schools. In addition, Trust Bank continues to make annual donations to schools at speech and prize giving days, including the convocation ceremony of the University of The Gambia.”
An obviously elated Ms Fatou Lamin Faye, the minister for Basic and Secondary Education, was effusive with praise for the bank for its steadfastness in providing opportunities every child in the country to gain access to quality education.
She said: “This is another manifestation of the importance TBL attaches to its corporate and social responsibility in complimenting government efforts towards quality education in The Gambia. This year’s award coincided with the celebration of our 50th independence anniversary and it came at a time when the celebration of 20 years of development in the Second Republic. The effort of the bank in promoting excellence and quality education in the country will be recorded in our history books as one of those institutions that have stood by my ministry to create educational opportunities for children of this country in a manner that rewards excellence.”
Speaking directly to the scholastic feat of the ten candidates, she added: “To perform well in an examination is one thing but being among the top ten performers is not a mean achievement. As a matter of policy, my ministry also provides scholarships to all students with aggregate 6 irrespective of which senior secondary school they attend. The provision of education to our school age population is largely the core responsibility of government. However, the overall investment in education goes beyond the capacity of the state alone. It is in this respect that we hope that such partnership with private institutions like Trust Bank will help in filling the gaps thus enhancing the realisation of our educational goals and targets.”
For his part, Mr Bokary S. Secka, who represented the head of national office the West African Examinations Council (WAEC), said: “The West African Examinations Council places great emphasis on healthy competition and academic excellence by ensuring that examination malpractice is brought to the barest minimum and also by instituting a number of national and international awards of excellence.”
He then added: “The establishment of WAEC in 1952 was borne out of the general inspiration of member countries to domesticate education thereby making it more relevant and development-oriented in English speaking West African countries. Since then education in West Africa underwent several evolutionary stages which were premised on indigenous needs but also anchored on the outcomes of various international conferences such as the goal of universal access to basic education, and the strive for quality as well as relevance.”]]>